John Huffman won the mayor’s seat of Southlake in the May 1 election. (Sandra Sadek / Community Impact newspaper)
Newly elected Southlake mayor John Huffman has always had an interest in public service, he said. What started as volunteering quickly turned into a career when he decided to run for city council for the first time in 2015.
After two successful and unopposed races, Huffman saw the mayor’s seat as the natural next step.
“[My family and I] I love Southlake, âsaid the businessman. âI felt that it was a good opportunity for me to give back a more important role. I felt well prepared for the role. And I felt that I had a lot to give to the city.
This election was the first time Huffman faced an opponent. He said the experience taught him to listen to citizens in a more intimate and engaging way.
âIt gives you a very close-up view and very good data on where the community stands on important issues,â Huffman said. âIt is good to hear their opinions on these issues, because at the end of the day we are the servants of the people. And it’s our job to implement the will of the people who put us in power. “
As Huffman enters his first term as mayor, his top three campaign pledges include tax breaks, the pursuit of low-density housing and disaster preparedness.
âThe lessons we learned during [COVID-19] and ‘snowmageddon’ are the ones we take with us into the next crisis we face, âhe said.
Huffman held the city’s first elected office at a time when the city is trying to get through a turbulent year that included the coronavirus pandemic and social issues. While he recognizes that the residents of Southlake do not always share the same political views, the community has common goals, he said.
âEveryone in the city wants safe neighborhoods for their families, fiscal discipline from their elected officials, a welcoming environment in their city, their community, in their schools, and the positivity, hope and transparency of their people. leaders, âhe said. âThese are universal principles. And it doesn’t matter who you voted for or what political party you belong to, that’s what you ultimately expect from your city officials. “
As things start to return to a somewhat prepandemic normalcy, Huffman said he hopes to restore opportunities for the community to forge relationships.
âWhen everyone is just sitting behind a keyboard on social media, it’s a lot harder to build real relationships. It’s much easier to get overwhelmed by the ups and downs of drama, âhe said.
Huffman said he plans to bring back popular city events such as Stars and Stripes, Celebrate Southlake and Oktoberfest in person.
âWhen we come together as a community and form those relationships and restart the ones that may have been altered a bit by COVID-19, that’s when we’ll see our community spirit come back and be stronger than ever. “, did he declare.